In addition to individual academic advising and support, listed below are the general steps involved in the counseling process for each of the four years of high school. A list of recommended courses is available from the College Board. Graduation Requirements for Saint John's students are listed under our Descriptive Catalog and on the School Profile.
The Freshman Year Program involves orientation and adjustment to the high school. Students are introduced to the counseling center staff and resources through group guidance sessions and individual interviews. A substantial amount of group guidance time is spent addressing areas that pertain to the student’s academic and personal growth. In early Fall, freshmen are introduced to and prepared for the October administration of the Practice SAT or PSAT. During group guidance and individual meetings with students, a strong emphasis is placed on involvement in the school community through activities such as extracurricular, co-curricular classes, athletics and community service. The School Counselors initiate the students’ Counseling Office files and ensure that each student’s file contains a completed student biography form, previous school transcripts and any other educationally relevant documentation. Each freshman meets with his School Counselor at least twice during the year.
The Sophomore Year Program utilizes group guidance sessions to explain and prepare students for the PSAT in October. Group guidance sessions are also conducted after PSAT results are returned in order to help students analyze their individual test taking strengths and weaknesses in preparation for the SAT. The School Counselors introduce students to My College Quickstart, a website developed by the College Board which helps students research colleges, college majors, college funding opportunities, and careers. My College QuickStart is available for students on any computer with Internet access. The School Counselors have at least two interviews with each student during the school year.
The Junior Year Program also includes group guidance sessions in the fall that address the PSAT, this time with special emphasis on the National Merit Scholarship Program. In the middle of the junior year, Counselors begin to work with students on college placement. Further instruction in the use of My College Quickstart is provided and students are introduced to a variety of other college information resources, including The Family Connection, (See your School Counselor for required access code) an interactive college placement website that contains specific SJ college stats. Counselors are also available for individual counseling appointments to discuss student transcripts, records and test scores as they pertain to future plans. Group guidance sessions (Junior Seminar) occur throughout the second semester to prepare juniors for the college placement process. Junior Career Night provides students with the opportunity to investigate several different careers in which they are interested. Guest speakers are invited to the school for this informative evening coordinated by the Studies Office and the Office of Alumni Relations.
The Senior Year Program focuses mainly on the college placement process from September to December. The Senior Seminar course provides seniors with an overview of the process and counselors use this class to distribute essential college placement related documents and information. Seniors are advised to sit for the October SAT Reasoning test for a second time and the SAT Subject Tests in November or December if necessary. Seniors are required to meet with their counselor at least once during first semester and individual parent appointments are encouraged. Individual meetings are used to guide students (and parents) through the college application process, taking into consideration individual student needs and talents. A Senior Parents Night (September) and a Financial Aid Seminar (December) are also provided for senior parents.